CATHEDRAL CITY —  Rita Lamb, who was elected in a special election in September 2019 to fill the vacancy created when Mayor Gregory S. Pettis died, has earned the trust and respect of her colleagues. To date, three of them are endorsing her for the District 1 seat in the Nov. 3 election.

Councilors Mark Carnevale, Ernesto Gutierrez and Raymond Gregory each told Uken Report he is unconditionally backing Lamb. Mayor John Aguilar said he “most likely” will be endorsing “but not at this point.”

Lamb has one opponent — Alan Carvalho, who is married to former City Councilor Shelley Kaplan. Lamb emerged victorious over Kaplan in the September 2019 election

“I’m endorsing Councilmember Lamb because she brings this Council a breath of fresh air without any hidden agenda,” Carnevale told Uken Report. “Her commitment to her position is outstanding. Councilmember Lamb has an impeccable reputation. She is concerned for all constituents, small and large businesses, and she has a great love for children and education. (She spent) her career as an educator. Her integrity and honesty is at the highest level — over any other candidate.”

Carnevale, who was elected to the City Council in November 2014, has watched Lamb mature in her new public role.

“She advanced into this position (by) studying thoroughly,” Carnevale said. “She does her homework and reports it in a calming matter.  Councilmember Lamb has brought a new dimension to this Council.”

Councilmember Gregory wasted no time in saying he will support Lamb.

“She’s proven that she’s engaged and that her heart is really with the residents,” Gregory said. “Her motivation is to make Cathedral City the best it can be for both residents and businesses.”

Lamb is a retired Elementary School Administrator with Desert Sands and Coachella Valley Unified School districts. Gregory especially appreciates her educational background, he said.

“She has that organizational background that enables her to look toward the future watching out for the city’s financial health — and doing it transparently,” Gregory said.

Gutierrez said Lamb has many admirable qualities that make her a valuable member of the City Council, including that she is a longtime resident and has her pulse on the community. She moved to the Coachella Valley in 1981 and has been a Cathedral City resident for 20 years.

“I think she’s a great lady,” Gutierrez said. “She’s done a wonderful job. She’s into it. She loves it. She’s the kind of City Council member everyone would want.”

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  • Rita Lamb: City of Cathedral City